Monday, June 30, 2008

Diggin' the Roots (RADIO BLOGCAST #4)

We've got a lot of new and old favorites for you on this 4th Blogcast Playlist! A lot of dusty old soulful tunes and legends of the music we all love. From the dub and reggae backing band of 1970s, the groovin' steady beat of the 60s, up to the name makers of the 80s, 90s and the present -we've got it all covered! We're lookin' back to the roots and we're giving 'em all to you as we start off with The Aggrovators' dub hit "Rocking Jamboree". Their sound is out of this world, with crisp one drops and stuttering echoes with that round, bouncing bass that will rattle your room. The rhythms lean more towards the sunny and bright, easy rocking side of reggae, rather than dark and rootsy, it's good times all throughout!

Jacob Miller's version of "Why Can't We Be Friends" had a unique style, using staccato motifs in counter play with the rhythm section and sounding magnetic. Taken from his 1976 album "Tenement Yard". A year after, Miller joined and signed with Inner Circle with their first album Reggae Thing, followed by Ready for the World. Both Albums achieved international acclaim for hard-driving rhythms. Miller is the uncle of the English-born reggae singer, Maxi Priest.

Ernest Ranglin's "On Higher Ground" is another favorite of mine and one of the few musicians to blend jazz and reggae successfully. No words can describe it. Just listnen to this!

When I was just starting out and in the lower stages of gaining interest in music, one of the first musicians that led me to explore various musical disciplines is The Clash. In fact, their album is one of the first record I bought when I was a kid, and the addiction never stopped. Its is so amazing how lead singer Joe Strummer and the rest of The Clash jumped out of the box and experimented with reggae, funk, rap, dub, rock and roll and rockabilly among other roots musics along with punk rock and really does it well. With Joe Strummer's older band, The 101ers, their "Keys To You Heart" track is a fusion of progressive rock and highly polished hint of early waves of British punk. Very notable. Very Joe Strummer. Reminds me of one local song and wondering if its patterned over this one. :-)

Speaking of The Clash, they also covered The Rulers' 1967 hit, "Wrong 'em Boyo" from their 1979 album London Calling. Far from The Clash's "skaish" version, The Rulers' original version is a rootsy Jamaican Rocksteady, less energetic, more relaxed but the bass is heavier and more prominent. You could just imagine how this sound floods the urban ghettos of Kingston carrying a Jamaican countryside experience together with Hopeton Lewis' "Take It Easy" making you shout "Lets do the rocksteady!"

Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett and Arthur Conley are some of the best known American Soul singers with lots of hit spots in the Pop and R&B charts. Conley and Redding re-wrote the Sam Cooke song "Yeah Man" into "Sweet Soul Music" and became a massive hit. Wilson Pickett's "Mustang Sally" is one of his well known classics thats so powerful and raw. Raising the roof with his sweaty and intense 60s Soul voice and making your day complete with Otis Redding's "Hard To Handle" is one treat you can't resist.

Even the current bands of today featured here seems to be trying to look back to the roots of their musical influences. This is pointed up by Rancid frontman Tim Armstrong with his 2007 solo album project "A Poet's Life" which was made in collaboration with Hellcat-signed reggae band The Aggrolites. One track from this album is "Translator". With Tim's signature voice backed by loose, punky, infectious grooves, This is shamelessly danceable. Other rootsy delight from today's playlist includes Madness' version of Chase The Devil", from their Dangermen Sessions album. They seem to be having fun in making this album, and surprisingly done it in a sexy way.

So treat yourself to some classic, old school ska, soul, rocksteady and some infectious dub grooves! Enjoy!


Rocking Jamboree - The Aggrovators
Dance All Night - Dr. Ring-Ding & The Senior Allstars
Shame & Sorrow - Moon Invaders
No Woman No Cry - Alphanso Stewart
Ranking Full Stop - Special Beat
Sweet Soul Music - Arthur Conley
Bartender - The Rude Boys
Murder - The Radiation Kings
Mustang Sally - Wilson Pickett
On Higher Ground - Ernest Ranglin
I'm In A Dancing Mood - Delroy Wilson
Jamaica Ska - Byron Lee & The Dragonaires
Hard to Handle - Otis Redding
Skinhead - The Loafers
Do the Jerk - Derrick Harriott & The Jiving Juniors
Fire Coal Man - The Wailing Souls
Wrong Em Boyo - The Rulers
The Devil Is Bad - The W's
Why Can't We Be Friends - Jacob Miller
I Chase the Devil - Madness
One Monkey Don't Stop No Show - The Marvels
Take It Easy - Hopeton Lewis
Translator -Tim Armstrong
Sesame Street - Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra
Keys To Your Heart - The 101'ers
Ska Au-Go-Go - Roland Alphonso & The Soul Bros.


Monday, June 23, 2008

After the Storm, We're Still Stompin'! (Radio Blogcast #3)

After the storm, I still managed to consolidate and gather several favorite tracks to comfort and rise us in a feel-good state. Today's playlist is a gathering of various rhythms to hum or sing-along with.

Lets begin with Lord Tanamo (aka Joseph Gordon), one of the best songwriters Jamaica has produced. He started out as a Mento star, who then moved to R&B and eventually to Ska. We all enjoy his hits as he leads the vocal tracks of Skatalites for "I'm In The Mood For Ska" and other Skatalites hits. Now at the age of 73, Tanamo still continues to perform live with various ska bands and reggae artists! Now who could beat that? In 2000, together with Dr. Ring Ding & the Senior Allstars, They released the "Best Place in the World" album where a fresh version of "Big Trombone" was included. This upbeat tribute to Don Drummond adds a further fabulous blast from the past. "Who could forget his pulsating beat? Turn it up and you wont be dissapointed! Another classic ska cut in this playlist includes: Doreen Shaffer's "Sugar Sugar". This charming Queen of Jamaican Ska will make you grooving and skanking along with this track, wether on your seat, in your room, on the dancefloor, or wherever it's appropriate to skank. Light but right!

Eastern Standard Time's version of "Dahil Sayo" is a bit crunchier and heavier, but still as good as the classic one. The original Skatalites' sound always have the signature hypnotic sound only they can make. Neighbors also did a version of this Filipino standard song and was included in the first album "Angono Ska Explosion" which the band produced and independently released. Some other Ska favorites on this playlist includes Hepcat's "Mama Used to Say" and The Busters' "Rude Girl" where Neighbors used to cover. I have included some of my friends' favorites that you will surely enjoy too!

Movin' on to reggae and soul, we got some classics too! Starting with The Gladiators' "Chatty Chatty Mouth" from their "Trenchtown Mix Up" album. This album is made up of a mixture of originals and remakes such as Bob Marley's "Soul Rebel". The songs from this album are quite strong but with great consistency. Another Hammond-driven treat is "My Girl" by Glen Adams. This successful keyboard player lifts up the reggae scene with his addictive keyboard tune signatures. He also did some touring with New York's pride, The Slackers. And who can forget Junior Murvin's "Police and Thieves"? A well known reggae song first recorded in the Jamaican reggae version in 1976 and then covered in a punk-reggae version with The Clash. Its a song many bands rendered with their own sound. I also remember Indio i playing this song too! That's why I included one of their tracks here, "Earth To Man", really tacky and proudly Pinoy. Bringing reggae music to a new level.

Turning the page to modern bands, you just cant resist the sound of The Impalers' "Uppercut" track! This California based masters are from the line up of veteran musicians from other ska bands such as Skankin' Pickle, Let's Go Bowling, The Rudiments, 78 RPM's and The Inciters. The heart of The Impalers' music lies in the deep traditions of Jamaican music and which I believe is The Aggrolites' female counterpart! Both are taking the very best of 60's and 70's reggae deep grooves!

I'm sure you will enjoy listening to today's playlist. So enough talk now and turn that volume up! Enjoy!

Big Trombone - Lord Tanamo With Dr. Ring-Ding & The Senior Allstars
Chatty Chatty Mouth - The Gladiators
Croaking Lizard - Lee Scratch Perry & The Upsetters
Dahil Sa Iyo - Eastern Standard Time
Driving me mad - The Hotknives
Earth to Man - Indio i
Ganjibus Gorilla - The Boilers
He Wants Me Back - Dance Hall Crashers
I'm Ready For Love - Martha Reeves & The Vandellas
Mama Used To Say - Hepcat
Mr. Brown - The Donkey Show
Mr. Pitiful - Otis Redding
My Girl - Glen Adams
Old Pueblo Ska - Dave's Big Deluxe
Police and Thieves - Junior Murvin
Rock And Roll Nightmare - The Coventry Automatics AKA The Specials
Rude Girl - The Busters
Secret Weapon - Dave And Ansel Collins
See Them A Come - Culture
Skatrina - Jump With Joey
Sugar Sugar - Doreen Shaffer
Think It Over - Harvey Averne Dozen
Uppercut - The Impalers
Viva La Ska Revolution - Bad Manners

>Download this Playlist<

Monday, June 16, 2008

Rudeboy's Back In Town! RADIO BLOGCAST #2

Hello friends! Another good day for a new treat as we bring you new, old and popular riddim sounds form our archives and have kept our musical appetite alive and fun through the present with pulsating beat on drums and bass, rhythm guitar, lots of horns and Hammond organs!

Starting with a track "Get Ready" by the late, great Ella! A tune that will really get you on your feet and on the dance floor! Originally released in the late 1960s, Ms. Fitzgerald truly blends it well and incorporated modern tunes of the time to her considerable mastery of standards. The Markettes' "Stirrin’ Up Some Soul"contains a good mix for the hard core Northern Soul lover. A great example of the real SOUL that many fans have loved for many years. Dancing to this beat is perfection!

"I'm in the Mood" is Pat Kelly's contribution to the development of Rock Steady and Reggae and the quality of his material really ranks up! This track is really well worth the ear time. If you're interested at all in the pioneering days of reggae, you owe it to yourself to know Pat Kelly. Other great Rocksteady blend for this playlist includes "Night Doctor" by The Upsetters.

In 1968 Serge Gainsbourg written "Je t'aime, moi non plus", (I love you... me neither) an explicitly erotic song which he had recorded with Brigitte Bardot. However, Bardot pleaded with Gainsbourg not to release their recording and was re-recorded with Jane Birkin replacing Bardot, and was released early in 1969. In 1975, Alexander Minto Hughes, better known as Judge Dread, an English reggae and ska artist did a cover version of this original UK chart-topper. He was the first white recording artist to have a reggae hit in Jamaica, and has the most banned songs of all time. It was fun listening to this track. So hilarious!

The Brace's "Julie, Julie" was one of the first ska songs that caught my attention when we we're still starting out with Neighbors and also one of the first cover songs we did during that time. People went crazy and jumping off their seats as we play this at Club Dredd, 70s Bistro and Mayrics in 1995! After more than 13 years of stompin' & skankin', Neighbors are now in a state of hiatus in the local ska scene and only time will tell when will the band be kicking again. Other ska tracks on this playlist includes "Wandering Soul" (taken from "Bones" album) by Bim Skala Bim, a great cut from the pioneers of American 80s Ska scene. Fans of authentic ska sounds will surely dig this rootsy ska with The Bluebeats' "Why Not". Berlin's JazzBo devoted their attention to the Jamaican ska-jazz of the 60s -making you dance with their distinct sound that's clean and catchy. With their "Nuclear Weapon" track, you could never go wrong! "Rudeboy Is Back In Town" by Laurel Aitken with Court Jester's Crew. Yes folks! The Rudeboy originator of Jamaican ska music really does it well! "Walk Don't Run", another rootsy sounding ska band -The Moon Invaders. These nine-piece ska band from Brussels, Belgium had the pleasure of being the backing band of the legendary Mr. Rocksteady, Alton Ellis for some of his special shows. Yeska's version of Tin Tin Deo are loaded with rhythms that are unrelenting but never bombastic, and the arrangements swings with Ska, Afro-Cuban jazz and incredibly high-energy salsa, enjoyable for listening and for dancing.

"King Tubby Special" was one of King Tubby's innovative studio work. This talented former radio repairman became a crowd favorite as he became noted as the inventor of the concept of the remix, cutting down and mixing echoes, reverb and sound effects. A truly essential addition to your collection.


Get Ready - Ella Fitzgerald
I'm In The Mood - Pat Kelly
Je T'aime - Judge Dread
Julie Julie - The Braces
King Tubby's Special - King Tubby
Night Doctor - The Upsetters
Nuclear Weapon - JazzBo
Rudeboy Is Back In Town - Laurel Aitken with Court Jester's Crew
Soul Shake - Sound Dimension
Stirrin’ Up Some Soul - The Marketts
Tin Tin Deo - Yeska
Walk Don't Run - The Moon Invaders
Walk on By - Jazz Jamaica
Wandering Soul - Bim Skala Bim
Why Not - The Bluebeats
66-40 - The Rhythm Doctors

>Download this Playlist<

Thursday, June 12, 2008


Finally! I have managed to walk through the How to's in making a mini player on this site! This is a first time so things are a bit alien and kinda tricky. But we're getting on it. ;-)

Yes folks! for our first Radio Blogcast! We give you some rare gems that will surely keep your feet tappin'. First is one track most you would probably be familiar with, as this tune was popularized and at most time linked with the great Reggae Ambassador himself, Robert Nesta Marley. Its Bend Down Low. But hey, this version is a tacky rocksteady with Byron Lee & The Dragonaires' musical genius. Taken from the "People Get Ready... It's Rock Steady!' album.

Next comes Chicago's ADJUSTERS! as they keep the backbeat steady and the rafters rockin'! On "Burnt Cream",, you will hear all the important'll know exactly what these cats have grown up listening to: ska, reggae, soul, anything that grooves! It's called "Crucial Rhythm & Blues" and its all THEIR sound!

Its Independence today so I have included some home grown tunes! Coffeebreak Island's "Don't fool around is an all-time favorite! As I recall seeing them first around 2001 at ClubDredd and Clubska Manila days, They kept things tight with their flames of passion always at peak, they're today's local scene's torchbearers. Another very own musical treasure and I guess one of the Philippines' charioteer of local Modern Soul and Mod, It's Juan Pablo Dream with "Soul Up!
We had a blast last week with Bing as we ended up watching Skaramouche's gig at Chakik's. We'll see you around Bing!

Goleta California's Crucial DBC with their "Dont Run Away" is one great cut my friend Wire's personal favorite, and one of my faves too. One of the 80s ska bands on Moon Records that made the scene pretty intense. These guys are really great!

Some mento tunes were up too, with Lord Perry's "Penny Reel". And later revived and covered by numerous Ska & Reggae bands. This is what Jamaica sound like before Ska.

The Slickers' "Too Experienced" is another track that have been covered by other ska bands. But with this cut, its a variation of reggae with a more relaxed tempo. The Slickers were best known for their more popular tracks like “Johnny Too Bad,” which appeared on the soundtrack to “The Harder They Come” starring reggae legend Jimmy Cliff.

And yes, The Specials' version of "Too Hot" was rough and tight. But wait 'til you hear the early cuts from the one and only and the most important figures in the history of ska and rocksteady music, Cecil Bustamente Campbell, better known as Prince Buster. Taken from "Fabulous Greatest Hits" album. Yeah, Yeah!

Bend Down Low - Byron Lee & The Dragonaires
Soul Up! - Juan Pablo Dream
Burnt Cream - The Adjusters
Pass The Dutchie (aka Pass The Kouchie) - Ernest Ranglin
Penny Reel - Lord Power
Over The Rainbow - Rico Rodriguez All-Stars
Don't Run Away - Crucial DBC
Too experienced - Slickers
Don't Fool Around - Coffeebreak Island
Too Hot - Prince Buster

Download this Playlist

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


Hello friends! I missed the good ol'days. Thats why we're bringing it back; though not on the air but on the web! As a little backgrounder on this Soundblasters, it started  in December 2004 as a weekly, one-hour radio show. We used to man the Studio at RJAM Radyo Bandido, 810 khz. (Teng a.k.a. Skunk, Joneighbors, Rudebong  & Mona)

And started out as SOUNDBLASTERS presents "Rudies All Around"
A Mod, Soul, Ska and Reggae hour airing every Sunday from 12:00 noon to 1:00 pm. 
After a handful of energetic episodes, the time slot was then moved to 4:00 to 5:00 pm of the same airing day. The show was eventually short-lived when another program was appointed and later took place of the Soundblasters slot.

But worry not boys and girls, 2008 is a good year for all of us and the scorching sound of Ska, Soul, Reggae and everything in between is here to stay!

Watch out for all the coming episodes as we give you delighful treats of intensified tunes!